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Historic Houston Clubs


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El Tango Dining Club

304 Preston

Demolished

ElTango.jpg

Bismarck Restaurant

719 Franklin

Extant

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Love Street Light Circus Feel Good Machine

1019 Commerce

Extant

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The Cellar, Les Quatre Saisons, Moulin Rouge

300 Block Milam

Demolished

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The Golden Fleece

807 Congress

Extant

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Gary Smith's Plantation Club

215 Milam

Extant

"Live Banjo Band!"

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Peacock Dining Room and Grill

707 Fannin

Demolished

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Genora White Kitchen #2

616 Main

Demolished

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Genora's White Kitchen

1007-1009 Main

Demolished

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Ship Ahoy

1007-1009 Main

Demolished

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Kelley's Famous Corral Room

910 Texas

Demolished

Kelleys.jpg

China Clipper

1006 Milam

Demolished

ChinaClipper.jpg

The Normandie

1009 Milam

Demolished

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Simpson's Dining Car

1415 Main

Demolished

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Ten Fathoms

740 Polk

Demolished

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Santa Anita Mexican Restaurant

1919 Louisiana

Demolished

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Old Mexico

120 Gray

Demolished

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West's Dairyland

Main at Gray

Demolished

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Ritz Dining Room

1214 McGowan

Demolished

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Weldon Cafeteria

4916 South Main

Extant

WeldonCafe.jpg

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Spark Plug Club

1142 Adele

Extant

SparkClub.jpg

Athens Restaurant

8037 Clinton

Extant

AthensRest.jpg

Frontier Restaurant

4107 OST

Demolished

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Bill Williams MacGregor House

5100 OST

Demolished

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Golden Hour Restaurant

5111 Griggs

Demolished

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Jimmy Menutis Lounge

3236 Telephone at Wayside

Demolished

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Las Vegas Inn

3706 Telephone

Demolished

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Dubose Tel-Wink Grill

4318 Telephone

Extant

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Old Hickory Stick

4521 Telephone

Demolished

HickoryStick.jpg

Spanish Village

4720 Almeda

Extant

SpanishVillage.jpg

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Stables Restaurant

2703 Weslayan

Demolished

Stables.jpg

Lamb's Smokehouse

2706 Westheimer

Extant

Lambs.jpg

Suzanne Cafeteria

2912 South Shepherd

Extant

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John's Sea Foods

1927 West Gray

Demolished

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Marquis Lounge

1957 West Gray

Exant

"Lounge for discriminating patrons"

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Ming Palace

2011 West Gray

Extant

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Felix Mexican Restaurant

904 Westheimer

Extant

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Michelangelos

307 Westheimer

Extant

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Alfred's

Town & Country, 9123 Stella Link, 2408 Rice Blvd.

Alfreds.jpg

Vittorio's Italian Restaurant

2529 Rice Blvd.

Extant

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Look's Sir-Loin House

6112 Westheimer

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The Railhead

6400 Richmond

railhead.jpg

Safari Restaurant

4902 Richmond

Extant

Safari.jpg

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Railhead was my absolute favorite restaurant as a kid in the 70's. It has been about 20 other places since then. T-Town 2000 was and is the last incarnation there now, with shootings and stabbings nightly.

Is the Look's by the Dome still there, I think the sign is.

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I never knew there was a Stables on Weslayan. There was one on Westheimer just east of Weslayan and on S. Main @ Kirby. Steak House Associates: Stables, Courtyard, Bud Bigelow's and Bordman's (where Chuy's is on Westheimer). All very good restaurants.

Love the cars in front of Lamb's. Let's see: 55 or 56 Buick wagon, Volvo of undetermined vintage, 57 Chevy, 54 Olds.

I'll have to go look up some of these extant buildings to go look up since I don't recognize many from the pics.

Dig those cats and kitties hanging out in front of Michelangelos. Way cool.

I saw your comment before the pic finished loading and was expecting to see some young men plying an old profession, as they have on lower Westheimer for years. Maybe that's what we are seeing!

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Is that Micheangelo's postcard dated? I'd put it at 1967-69.

Hope Lower Westheimer can once again have as vital a street life. If we can persuade people to step out of their townhomes onto the street (instead of into their cars) perhaps it can happen.

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So has the Museum of Houston come calling yet? lol
Yeah, this will show them who has the better online museum! :lol::lol:
Hope Lower Westheimer can once again have as vital a street life. If we can persuade people to step out of their townhomes onto the street (instead of into their cars) perhaps it can happen.

You know what the problem is with that stretch now? There are a couple of strip centers on the south side that are fronted by parking lots. I just don't think you can have a vital street life unless buildings front the sidewalk. Otherwise it will always turn into a non-pedestrian suburban-type streetscape. Put the parking lots in back!

The one from Michelangelos really cracked me up! I can only hope to be that groovy one day...

I'm just hoping that the people in that picture, or someone that knows them, stumbles on this topic. :D

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  • 1 month later...
  • 2 weeks later...
Probably some chemical assistance. B)

That reminds me of Cheech & Chong's "Big Bambu" album. "Unamerican Bandstand" hosted by Laid-Back Lenny. He said: "We now have the winner of the 'How many downers you can drop' contest". "The lead singer of the band couldn't make it because he stuck himself in the eye with a coke spoon".

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  • 1 month later...
I knew John's Sea Foods as Captain John's Oyster Resort. I sat in there in 1980 and watched the "Miracle on Ice" game between the Soviet Union and the U.S. It had a fire some time after that and didn't reopen. It was where the Pier 1 is now on West Gray. Across the street from Captain John's, on the same side of Gray, was the Mrs. Baird's Bakery, another cool building that I wish was still there. It was replaced by a Walgreens, Blockbuster, strip center,etc.I would like to have a photo of the Mrs. Baird's building.

Across the street from Captain John's was Weingartens/Safeway/Appletree and now Kroger. In the early 70s there was a small three screen cinema in that old strip center called the Park I, II and III. The Park III was like a repertory theatre before the River Oaks became one.

As a teenager, I went to that cinema when it first opened. Is it still standing?

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  • 4 months later...
How can people be "laid back" with loud, live music playing?

I used to run the door at Club Bojangles and under it La Bastille. Killer music, man. Wayne Cochran, the blue eyed king of soul, Buddy Rich, Fats Domino, The New Christy Minstrels. One night at La Bastille a bum-looking fellow came down to the club so I doubled the door fee to try to keep him out. A minute later the bar manager came running to the door asking me if I had charged the man. I proudly told him the story. He said, "You can't charge him - that's Woody Herman!"

After hours we used to go down to The Cellar and take our own bottle so we could drink. The picture on this site of The Cellar makes it look much nicer and hipper that I remember. It was very rundown, no live band, fleabitten sleeping bags on the floor, and the "entertainment" was local hookers who strutted, in a wobbly fashion, their stuff on the runway, stripping at they went.

I'm amazed that those brain cells are still there and functioning.

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Speaking of "Bojangles"...

Does anybody else here remember that restaurant/club Sonny Look had on Market Square in the early 70s? My dates and I frequented that place a lot because he booked in some pretty big name entertainers. I remember seeing the Four Freshmen, and anybody who ever saw those guys can testify to how great a show they put on.

Ray Rogers and the Bojangles also performed there just before, or at about the same time that he was opening his own club Bojangles over on Franklin. Of all the local entertainers I've seen over the years, I still regard Ray and his group as the most talented and most entertaining. They just put on one helluva show.

Ray gave Lisa Hartman her first singing opportunities. Speaking of, I know that Ray's now married to Jonni Hartman, and is Lisa's step-father, and Clint Black's step-father in law, but does he still perform anywhere?

And as long as we're talking about Ray and the Bojangles, does anybody know whatever happened to Rex Kramer, the Bojangles' original front man? After his "thing" with Liza Minnelli, he seems to have fallen off the face of the Earth.

Sometime around 1970, Liza Minnelli did some shows in Houston, and while she was in town she went to The Bojangles show one night. She and Kramer immediately went into heat for each other. She liked Kramer so much she took them all on the road with her as her backup group, but that was mainly to stay "close" to Kramer. He wasn't totally useless -- he arranged a lot of her recordings -- and was with her in Germany during the filming of Cabaret.

Here are a couple of paragraphs from a Time Magazine article about Liza. written in 1972.

"Unlike most of her romances, the affair with Rex ended with some unpleasantness. Rex's ex-wife is suing Liza for $500,000, charging alienation of affection. Rex, who now plays in joints in Houston, apparently saw a more unstable side of her nature than did most other people. "The pace she sets for herself is simply terrific," he says, "but she just can't slow down. She would worry about not sleeping and would start taking downers to help herself." He describes terrible tantrums, after which she would "literally rave, then collapse."

Liza angrily rebuts him point by point and now claims that she knew all along that Rex was using her. Finally, to get rid of him in Germany, where he was such a nuisance that he was barred from the set of Cabaret, she says that she and her secretary, Deanna Wenble, arranged an elaborate, melodramatic scheme to make him think she had fallen in love with a cameraman. "He said he'd leave me only if I fell in love with somebody else," she explains."

Kramer was banned from the sets because he was a monumental pain-in-the-ass who was always trying to insert himself into the production process. The producer and director had to put up with him because he was schtupping their star, but Liza also got tired of him and dropped the group. Kramer dropped out of sight, but Ray took over the group and kept it going as Ray Rogers and the Bojangles and the rest is history. But where is Rex Kramer now?

Edited by FilioScotia
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Filio, I have wondered the same thing about a couple of "local" acts, like Roy Head, and Johnny Lee. My mother used to date Roy Head back in his heyday, I can remember hangin' out with him a few times back in the late 70's early 80's. I met Johnny Lee a couple of times back when Urban Cowboy came out, my father and him were drinkin' buddies at Gilley's then when Johnny opened his own club they would alternate.

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Roy Head seems to be still around

Believe it or not, I found a website that says he was singing at a little honky tonk on I-45 up north of Conroe as recently as April of 2003.

Check it out. http://www.thebulletin.com/archives/2003/april/royhead.htm

And Johnny Lee is still out there singing and recording. These days he can be found in Branson Missouri most of the time. He doesn't have his own theater. I'm sure he sings at Mickey Gilley's Theater and other venues.

Here's a link to his fan club. http://www.johnnyleefanclub.com/news.htm

Edited by FilioScotia
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  • 2 weeks later...

He's still gigging all over Texas.

Look for him to perform in February at the Gulf Coast Hall of Fame Show in Port Arthur.

http://www.panews.com/communities/local_story_360114821.html

Believe it or not, I found a website that says he was singing at a little honky tonk on I-45 up north of Conroe as recently as April of 2003.

Check it out. http://www.thebulletin.com/archives/2003/april/royhead.htm

And Johnny Lee is still out there singing and recording. These days he can be found in Branson Missouri most of the time. He doesn't have his own theater. I'm sure he sings at Mickey Gilley's Theater and other venues.

Here's a link to his fan club. http://www.johnnyleefanclub.com/news.htm

Roy in Port Arthur

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  • 4 weeks later...

My parents used to talk about a club on north main called the "P.A" or Pan American Nite Club. My mom and her sisters would go to the Matinee in the 50s and 60s. I know that a lot of prominent Latin groups like Tito Puente and Perez Prado would play there. My dad even played with a band to two. I think the building may still be there, but I'm sure it was closed by the 80s.

Does anyone know anything about it or have any photos of the interior? I've heard about a really beautiful fountain that was near the entrance. My folks and aunts and uncles would love to see.

Edited by purelife
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Genora's White Kitchen-my grandfather(dad's father) worked here, and,a ccording to dad, he worked so much, that he's probably one of the waiters, hosts in the photo(painting)!

Market Square-my only exposure to Market Square was being able to get pitchers of beer while still 16 at The Inn on the Square(or was it called Village Inn?), where we used to see a band called Jeramiah Black(Christopher Cross).

On The Border on Telephone Rd., past Hobby Airport where we used to catch bands like Lick, Lightning, (and who could forget that Ramones/Runaways show!) etc.

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My parents used to talk about a club on north main called the "P.A" or Pan American Nite Club. My mom and her sisters would go to the Matinee in the 50s and 60s. I know that a lot of prominent Latin groups like Tito Puente and Perez Prado would play there. My dad even played with a band to two. I think the building may still be there, but I'm sure it was closed by the 80s.

Does anyone know anything about it or have any photos of the interior? I've heard about a really beautiful fountain that was near the entrance. My folks and aunts and uncles would love to see.

What a small world it is. The Pan American was a showcase for the local near Northside area. I have older relatives that either played in orchestras and or bands there during the late 1940's and 50 and some in the 60' thru 70's. The PA as it was called rivaled the Stardust Ballroom over on Fulton my much older cousins ran that place for a long time until they finally called it quits.

My mom says that the P.A. as it was known was once a very prominent and high class place back when. People really dressed up to go there. I have some photos of my big sister on the outside circa 1962. I also have many photos of The Stardust Ballroom on inside. That was a much bigger place and became a more focal point as the PA was going downhill by the 1970's. They finally had to demolish both of them because of deglect and disrepair. The only reminder left is the Poppa Burger joint across the street and it will soon disappear as the rail enters. My aunt ran that place for over 20 years. Most is just a memory now. Glad you brought this up!

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Over on Chenevert st? on the same corner where Irma's Mexican restaraunt now stands used to be a totally cool Punk Club called "Cabaret Voltaire".

Cabaret was around from about 1980 to about 1984 I think then finally was forced to be shut down (wonder why). The fuzz gave everyone such a hard time. Houston just couldn't cope with this British hardcore type of thrashing what else. They used to feature some really wild and popular punk bands, they pretty much rivaled "Consolidated Arts Warehouse" which was another cool place to hang out in the early 80's. CAW was next to where Chelsea Place is over on Montrose. One night the news was on and they were televising a huge fire and my little sister said ...Hey isn't that where you hang out? What! CAW burned to cinders!

Cabaret Voltaire still hung around for a good while until the new wave/punk scene sort of fizzled out. Mowhaks and spiked colored hair slowly went away. I'll never forget one night Suicidal Tendencies was playing when some girl flew in the air & landed smack on my head! Ouch! still hurts when I think about it! Slam dancing was the Rage now its just called "jumping into the mosh pit". I would probably end up in IC unit. We used to meet so many funny and crazy people with similar interests in music. If anyone has a photo please add?

So much for HouSton's PunK RocK scene...

Good ol days...

Edited by Vertigo58
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What a small world it is. The Pan American was a showcase for the local near Northside area. I have older relatives that either played in orchestras and or bands there during the late 1940's and 50 and some in the 60' thru 70's. The PA as it was called rivaled the Stardust Ballroom over on Fulton my much older cousins ran that place for a long time until they finally called it quits.

My mom says that the P.A. as it was known was once a very prominent and high class place back when. People really dressed up to go there. I have some photos of my big sister on the outside circa 1962. I also have many photos of The Stardust Ballroom on inside. That was a much bigger place and became a more focal point as the PA was going downhill by the 1970's. They finally had to demolish both of them because of deglect and disrepair. The only reminder left is the Poppa Burger joint across the street and it will soon disappear as the rail enters. My aunt ran that place for over 20 years. Most is just a memory now. Glad you brought this up!

I just had that in mind about the old Pan American ballroom. i rember it and was going to look for pictures. Can you post some from PA and Stardust. I forgot how it looked, but last i remember was early 90's when i was 12-17. they nocked it down and is currently parking for Casa de Amigos clinic. Poppa Burger will be missed im going to take pictures of it but hopefully they can stay affloat with the addition of the Northline rail extenstion. Ill take some pictures of the area this weekend to share, along with the other old buildings on N. Main-45

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  • 3 weeks later...
Filio, I have wondered the same thing about a couple of "local" acts, like Roy Head, and Johnny Lee. My mother used to date Roy Head back in his heyday, I can remember hangin' out with him a few times back in the late 70's early 80's. I met Johnny Lee a couple of times back when Urban Cowboy came out, my father and him were drinkin' buddies at Gilley's then when Johnny opened his own club they would alternate.

Roy is all over the news again now that his son Sundance is a finalist on American Idol. I believe he lives up 59 in Porter.

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  • 6 months later...

Thanks for the info! I'd love to see some photos if you can post them!

What a small world it is. The Pan American was a showcase for the local near Northside area. I have older relatives that either played in orchestras and or bands there during the late 1940's and 50 and some in the 60' thru 70's. The PA as it was called rivaled the Stardust Ballroom over on Fulton my much older cousins ran that place for a long time until they finally called it quits.

My mom says that the P.A. as it was known was once a very prominent and high class place back when. People really dressed up to go there. I have some photos of my big sister on the outside circa 1962. I also have many photos of The Stardust Ballroom on inside. That was a much bigger place and became a more focal point as the PA was going downhill by the 1970's. They finally had to demolish both of them because of deglect and disrepair. The only reminder left is the Poppa Burger joint across the street and it will soon disappear as the rail enters. My aunt ran that place for over 20 years. Most is just a memory now. Glad you brought this up!

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Thanks for the info! I'd love to see some photos if you can post them!

Will do! Got to scan some more then will post!

I ate at Poppa Burger the other day again before it vanishes. Took several photos for future interest. Boy that area was so alive in the day. Like a ghost town now. :(

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  • 4 years later...

Railhead was my absolute favorite restaurant as a kid in the 70's. It has been about 20 other places since then. T-Town 2000 was and is the last incarnation there now, with shootings and stabbings nightly.

Is the Look's by the Dome still there, I think the sign is.

Not the same building since 1989

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  • 10 months later...

used to go to alot of the clubs. always liked fools gold, cow hop, the club in the barbary coast apartments. blancos and this really cool place in montrose but i can not remember the name. there was always a place to go to after work to unwind. houston had descent bars and today because of health problems cant drink and party anymore but have good memories of these places.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Here is one. The Barbary Coast. It was a very popular nightclub in the late 70's, early 80's, located in the Westpoint Apartments near Hillcroft and Voss. The building is still there, now the office and recreation center for the complex.

  

post-194-0-94354100-1372877856_thumb.jpg

 

This is what it looked like inside

 

post-194-0-55293900-1372878077_thumb.jpg

 

Here is an entrance. You can still see the "Barbary Coast" sign

 

post-194-0-91084800-1372878189_thumb.jpg

 

 

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  • The title was changed to Historic Houston Clubs

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